The Community Broadcasters Association will be meeting in Las Vegas from 10/26/08 through 10/28/08 for its annual convention – and with the DTV transition in the immediate future, topics related to digital broadcasting will be a major focus of the gathering. Prominent on the topic list are sessions on “building DTV stations, generating ad revenue and growing a station’s audience with quality programming, ad sales and ratings and dealing with the transition to digital.” Also, FCC Media Bureau’s Hossein Hashemzadeh will be on hand to take questions on regulatory issues. The meeting will feature a debate on the relative virtues of remaining analog or transitioning to digital, and will look at the challenges of building out digital facilities and the equipment needed to do so. Techniques to maximize both revenue and local programming focus will be examined.
RBR/TVBR observation: If at all possible, we feel the best course is to go digital. In fact, we doubt there is anybody in the broadcast community anywhere who would consider it wise to hang back with analog equipment in a world that has left that technology on the scrap heap. If the economics are troublesome, it should be noted that member stations of CBA have an important role to play during local emergencies; therefore, it should not be out of the question for Congress to budget some cash to make sure the LPTV/Class A build-out is completed sooner rather than later.